Time is a paradox for Katie Tannenbaum, whether measured by a stopwatch or a calendar.
It's moving as fast as the sled that propelled Tannenbaum to the cusp of becoming an Olympian, even as the moments of anticipation seem to last as long as the gap between Olympics.
The 36-year-old skeleton racer didn't even begin racing until 2010, but rose to the World Cup level by 2011, and didn't know she'd qualified for the 2022 Winter Olympics until late January.
Tannenbaum was set to be the flag bearer for the Virgin Islands as the territory's lone athlete, but missed the Opening Ceremony due to positive COVID-19 tests that have left her in quarantine.
View social media post: https://www.instagram.com/p/CZoZdJ4AjMT/
Tuesday marks Tannenbaum's seventh day in isolation, giving her no test runs on the skeleton track with one day left to try and complete all of her training runs.
She just wants to control her own fate when it comes to racing in the tournament.
Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics
Watch all the action from the Beijing Olympics live on NBC
It’s really hard mentally. This isn’t the Olympic experience I imagined. They don’t provide any excuses, someone will just say the other person you got information from was wrong.
Tannenbaum says she's "not confident" that she'll be released from isolation in time to compete and believes that the CT values of her COVID-19 tests are all above what the Virgin Islands National Olympic Committee has been told is the threshold to be considered COVID-19 negative.
Her quotes are dripping with anguish and desperation, items deeply diverted from the many feel-good stories of the Olympics. But all she can do is wait and hope for the opportunity to rush to the starting line of one of the world's fastest races.